Maldives: Kuredu first night disappointment

We were very surprised and disappointed when we got to the restaurant we selected for the night. We had booked half board and this was a designated restaurant. They basically turned us away saying we should have made reservations. We thought they were joking but no they were not. So they told us all the designated restaurants are booked and we should try eating at one of the a la cart restaurants. What a scam — why would anyone pay half board if they can’t get a seat at dinner. Would you??

Shot from restaurant where they turned us away:
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As we tried investigating, we learned that one has to reserve a restaurant everyday at 9 am or take a chance before 6 pm (they don’t make reservations after this point). This is simply ridiculous! Defeating the whole purpose of a relaxed carefree vacation. They basically told us we need to be on a schedule – wish we knew this was going to be a regimented camp instead of a relaxation island, we would have gone to a different island.

Things got worse… since we are leaving at 8:45am for a full day of sailing, we thought we would ask the front desk to make tomorrow’s dinner reservation. This way we could eat when we return from the sail trip. Well, that would have been too logical. We asked and the answer was ‘we will give it a try but we can’t guarantee a reservation’ !!! WTF is the most appropriate reaction since this is an island you can practically walk around in about an hour and resorts owns the restaurants. We are not requesting dinner reservation at another island or country!

Sooo needless to say Kuredu is yet to impress us. Service is not cutting it. Maybe we got too used to excellent treatment at Komandoo, they did set a higher bar for sure.

To Kuredu, we will see if we can give Ken Flockhart, the GM of the island, some feedback about this unpleasant experience.

To you, dear readers and fellow travelers… unless you would like to be on a regimented camp and keep hours to make daily dinner reservations, mind you even having to get a ticket for the reservation before showing up to your dinner, we would recommend considering other islands. Afterall… there are over 135 resort islands, plenty to choose from.

Please share this posting with others so they may be saved from the unpleasant experiences.

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Maldives: Kuredu .. partial report!

20140605-173409.jpgWe arrived at Kuredu island today and been exploring it all day. Why ‘partial report’ you might ask — well, it is a big island so it will take a bit before we can give you the ‘full report’.

We were greeted by the staff singing and drumming. We were assigned a host ‘Melanie’ – who will be our go to person whenever we have a question or need something. This was different than the other two islands, maybe because this one is so big and so many people.

It is the biggest island we visited here so far and our last island. Sad to think this is our last destination, until we return to Maldives again.

Kuredu has a different feel, more crowded and has more activities — so you don’t get the remote feeling from it. We like variety so this will be interesting after the quiet paradise islands we have been enjoying.

When they say activities they mean it – they have everything from power boats, parasailing, catamarans, kite surfing… and more. For now we are trying to figure out what time and where the daily yoga is 😉

Kuredu has 7 restaurants / bars – as we sample each we will let you know what’s good what’s not.

We are at a beach villa here – it is very similar to Komandoo. Without hesitation we can say the beach and water is better at Komandoo. We miss our private sharks 😦 circling in front of our doorstep.
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Yes we already made a friend at Kuredu – meet Freddy the crab!
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Maldives: fashion edit continues…

Ok, so at Komandoo, the general rule is the following:
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It is a fantastic rule, we have not worn our flip flops since we have arrived. We runaround in our swimwear and cover ups. Our advice is pack at least 4 bikinis or your choice of swimwear and at least 2 cover ups.

The exception to this rule is dinner. We like dressing up a bit. You won’t feel out of place either way – there are others who are also dressed or casual. It is comfortable atmosphere.

Here are our accessories for tonight’s dinner:
20140604-113906.jpgDesigners: LaMer, Kenneth Lane, Kate Spade, Noir,

Don’t expect much of a nightlife. It is a small quiet island, but every couple days they have a cover band – which was actually fantastic!

Here is the cool ceiling of the Kandu bar:
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Maldives: Komandoo island resort – full report!

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Komandoo is located north of Male and takes about 35-40 min by seaplane to get there. It is surrounded by couple other islands, some where locals live.

The resort is operated in partnership by a Swedish and Maldivian firm. It also operates the Kuredu island which is very nearby. The general manager is Patrick who greets everyone at arrival and he is Belgian. We were greeted by songs, cold coconut juice and homemade coconut ice cream. They know how to start your holiday on a positive note.
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We found the hospitality and level of service to be much better here than Gangehi. Also the beach front villas are better and cleaner. But we would advise to pick one not facing the local islands, the view is better. Our villa is nearly at the end tip of this 500 meter long island. Also the villas have outdoor bathroom, shower and jet tubs. Rooms are cleaned twice a day, but as a environment conscious island they won’t change sheets everyday unless you leave the cute wooden turtle on the bed. We love that they are eco friendly.

At first we were ambivalent about the half board but we love it now – the food is quality and lot of fresh fruits.

There is a bit of nightlife as well — last night we had a great cover band with a great variety of songs and sang some requests too.

The staff is better trained in hospitality and services in general. There are also women working at this island which we did not see at Gangehi except for the spa and the souvenir shop.

Water is fantastic – private beach with deafening quiet except of the sounds of ocean. The black tip sharks and stingrays go up and down the beach. So exciting to swim next to them and be in their presence. They are harmless and very cute (we think).
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While this is the rainy season we have had great weather on both Gangehi and Komandoo. Occasional rains in the evening or overnight have been welcome after the heat of the day.

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Now we are off to snorkeling – catch you later!!

Maldives: what to wear – fashion edition!

Ok so you are probably wondering what we wear and what is the attire around here. Before we got here we read many things, some said just beach wear some said long and modest clothes.

We are here now and this is what we have seen in 3 islands so far:

Male: little more conservative since it is the capital city and people live and work there. You can get away with shorts and knee length skirt/ dresses.

Gangehi and Komandoo: let loose and stick with your swimwear, cover ups, and for dinner casual or slightly dressy clothes. We brought long flowing dresses, they are super easy to wear and elevate the style a bit. Other people wore similar things, men stuck to casual but nice shorts and shirts.

Here is a glimpse at our beach ware… can you tell we love mixing, wearing matchy-matchy stuff is not our personal style.

Morning swimwear:
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Designers: Ondade Mar, Eberjey, VIX PaulAhermanny, Heidi Klein

Evening swimwear:
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Designers: Mikoh, Zinke, Tibi, Tori Praver

Please note – Maldives is not a topless zone. You have to keep your top on, maybe unless you are on a yacht somewhere in the distance.

Today’s swimming companion was a sting ray – seriously we were a bit afraid.
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Maldives: on our way to Komandoo!

20140602-094110.jpgSeaplane ride to Male, before another short flight to Komandoo. There is currently only one seaplane company operating flights – so prices and schedules are unpredictable and not fair. Locals mentioned that two other companies might start operating soon, which should help break the monopoly.

Our barefoot captains! They were fun… made me want to learn how to fly a seaplane. 20140602-094051.jpg
Seaplane platform….
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Can’t wait to arrive at our new island to start exploring. For now we will relax at the Komandoo Private Lounge with our goodie bag.